Trump’s new rule restricting EPA’s use of certain science could have short life | Science | AAAS

“President Donald Trump’s administration yesterday finalized a controversial rule that would make it more difficult for the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to use major health studies to guide pollution regulations. But the new rule—which has been fiercely opposed by the scientific community—could have a short life. The apparent victory by Democrats yesterday in two Senate races in Georgia is expected to give the party control of the U.S. Senate, and lawmakers could use a rarely invoked law to revoke the rule by a simple majority vote….”

StrengtheningTransparency inPivotal Science UnderlyingSignificant RegulatoryActions andInfluentialScientific Information

“SUMMARY: This action establishes how the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) will consider the availability of dose-response data underlying pivotal science used in its significant regulatory actions and influential scientific information. When promulgating significant regulatory actions or developing influential scientific information for which the conclusions are driven by the quantitative relationship between the amount of dose or exposure to a pollutant, contaminant, or substance and an effect, the EPA will give greater consideration to studies where the underlying dose-response data are available in a manner sufficient for independent validation. This action also requires the EPA to identify and make publicly available the science that serves as the basis for informing a significant regulatory action at the proposed or draft stage to the extent practicable; reinforces the applicability of peer review requirements for pivotal science; and provides criteria for the Administrator to exempt certain studies from the requirements of this rulemaking….”

In a parting gift, EPA finalizes rules to limit its use of science | Ars Technica

“The EPA’s new rule, which will be formally published tomorrow, is an attempt to set additional standards for the evidence it considers when establishing new regulations for pollutants. In principle, the rule sounds great: it wants the data behind the scientific papers it uses to be made publicly available before it can be used to support regulatory decisions. In reality, the rule is problematic, because many of these studies rely on patient records that need to be kept confidential. In other cases, the organizations with the best information on some environmental hazards are the companies that produce or work with them, and they may not be interested in sharing proprietary data.

The practical result of this sort of change is that the EPA would be precluded from relying on scientific papers that contained the clearest indications of public harm. This would almost certainly lead to weaker rules or a decision not to regulate at all….”

E.P.A.’s Final Deregulatory Rush Runs Into Open Staff Resistance

“As President Trump’s Environmental Protection Agency rushes to complete its regulatory rollbacks, agency staff, emboldened by the Biden victory, moves to stand in the way….

Thomas Sinks directed the E.P.A.’s science advisory office and later managed the agency’s rules and data around research that involved people. Before his retirement in September, he decided to issue a blistering official opinion that the pending rule — which would require the agency to ignore or downgrade any medical research that does not expose its raw data — will compromise American public health….”

Public Lab, Executive Director

“Public Lab’s mission is to pursue environmental justice through community science and open technology.  We use science and inquiry to shift power structures so that anyone can be a change agent in addressing environmental health issues, through the creation of monitoring techniques, formation of research questions, selection of research sites, strategies for engaging proactively with stakeholders, and low-cost community exposure interventions. To learn more, visit www.publiclab.org. 

Public Lab, the largest community science organization in the world, seeks an Executive Director to scale the organization and increase its impact. This is an ideal role for a leader who can translate vision and strategy into executable action, establish clear measures for success and oversee day-to-day progress toward goals. The Executive Director will ensure the long-term financial stability of Public Lab by attracting resources, support and partnerships. This person will be the primary vision holder for a largely remote staff and global community and will facilitate collaborations to achieve on-the-ground improvements in environmental conditions in communities….”

Home – CABI.org

“CABI is an international, inter-governmental, not-for-profit organization that improves people’s lives worldwide by providing information and applying scientific expertise to solve problems in agriculture and the environment.

Our approach involves putting information, skills and tools into people’s hands. CABI’s 50 member countries guide and influence our work which is delivered by scientific staff based in our global network of centres.”

Home – CABI.org

“CABI is an international, inter-governmental, not-for-profit organization that improves people’s lives worldwide by providing information and applying scientific expertise to solve problems in agriculture and the environment.

Our approach involves putting information, skills and tools into people’s hands. CABI’s 50 member countries guide and influence our work which is delivered by scientific staff based in our global network of centres.”

Annual Review of Environment and Resources and Annual Review of Nuclear and Particle Science use Subscribe to Open to publish 2020 volume open access

“— Nonprofit publisher Annual Reviews is pleased to announce that the 2020 volumes of the Annual Review of Environment and Resources (https://www.annualreviews.org/journal/environ) and the Annual Review of Nuclear and Particle Science (https://www.annualreviews.org/journal/nucl) have been converted from gated to open access. All articles in these volumes are published under a CC BY license and the back volumes, dating from 1976 and 1952, respectively, are now freely available. These are the final two journals included in the 2020 pilot program for Subscribe to Open, joining the Annual Review of Cancer Biology, the Annual Review of Public Health, and the Annual Review of Political Science….”

Scandinavian Journal of Work, Environment & Health – Scandinavian Journal of Work, Environment and Health goes full open access

“As of 1 January 2021, the Scandinavian Journal of Work, Environment and Health (SJWEH) will become a full open access (OA) journal. Under the “gold” OA status, all new articles will be published as “unlocked content” on the journal’s website. This makes the final version of an article freely accessible for everyone, and allows for distribution and adaptation as long as the authors are duly acknowledged as they retain the copyright. Online subscriptions will no longer be needed and thus terminated, whereas subscriptions for the printed journal will continue.

Going full OA is a major step in the 45-year history of the journal. With this step, we join the rapidly growing Open Science movement (1). A core aim of this movement is “making full and immediate open access a reality” as proposed by “Plan S” (also known as “cOAlition S”), which has been endorsed among others by the European Commission, the World Health Organization and numerous funding agencies including the Academy of Finland, the Research Council of Norway, and the Swedish Research Council for Health, Working Life and Welfare (Forte) (2). OA publishing means that research results are immediately available both for critical discussion in the whole scientific community – including researchers in low income countries who may not have access to subscription journals – and for consideration and decision-making by stakeholders and policy-makers. During the current COVID-19 pandemic, many journals have pledged to publish COVID-19 related articles as OA, acknowledging the societal need of getting unrestricted, immediate access to research results (3). At SJWEH, we believe the societal need of getting immediate access to research results is not limited to times of a pandemic….”